Orange County Massive Oil Spill Response Ongoing

oil spill off Newport Beach
oil spill off Newport Beach
An aerial view of the massive oil spill off Newport Beach, Calif. Photo by Petty Officer 1st Class Richard Brahm, U.S. Coast Guard District 11 PADET Los Angeles.

Coast Guard members and partner agencies on Tuesday continued their response into what’s considered one of the biggest oil spills in California history.

Since Sunday, more than a dozen boats and aircraft have been involved in oil recovery response off the coast of Orange County. So far, roughly 3,150 gallons of crude has been collected, a safety zone of about 1,000 yards around the oil spill boats has been established and about 5,360 feet of boom has been deployed, according to USCG.

Meanwhile, the California Department of Fish and Wildlife director has enacted a fishery closure in oil spill-affected areas and the Oiled Wildlife Care Network is on hand to help any animals covered in crude. Local officials said beaches could be closed for weeks.

The cause of the spill is still under investigation. On Monday, the Associated Press reported that investigators are reviewing where the spill may have possibly been caused by a pipeline struck by the anchor of a vessel.

Cargo ships entering the Los Angeles-Long Beach port complex routinely pass through the area, Coast Guard officials said. In recent months, backlogs have plagued the ports, resulting in dozens of container vessels regularly anchoring while they wait to enter the ports.

For people and businesses who may have been directly impacted by the oil spill, a claims number has been created: 866-985-8366 and reference Pipeline P00547, according to USCG.

By Karen Robes Meeks